lie in wait(redirected from in wait)
lie in wait
To await someone or something from a concealed position. When I'm walking alone at night, I'm always worried that attackers are just lying in wait for me.
lie in wait (for someone or something)
Fig. to stay still and hidden, waiting for someone or something. Bob was lying in wait for Anne so he could scold her about something. The assassin lay in wait for his target to approach.
lie in wait
Remain hidden while preparing to attack, as in The opposition was quietly lying in wait for the incumbent to make his first big mistake. This expression originally alluded to physical attacks and is now often used figuratively. [Mid-1400s] Also see lay for.
lie in ˈwaithide and wait for somebody so that you can attack them: The police think the murderer must have been lying in wait for his victim.
lie in wait (for), to
To ambush, to prepare to attack from a hiding place. This cliché, which dates from the fifteenth century, originally alluded to a physical attack. It was soon being used metaphorically, as by Jonathan Swift in A Tale of a Tub (1704): “A ring of disciples, who lie in wait to catch their droppings.”